Grief is more than mourning a death; we experience it in divorce, in the loss of friendships, in changing family dynamics and more. Join Matt Paxton, cleaning expert and former host of the TV show HOARDERS, and Pete Shrock, active national crisis support leader, as they navigate daily grief with humor and storytelling. It’s not about dying, it’s about living.
Matt and Pete reflect on the old saying, “everything happens for a reason” and ask, “does it though?” They dig into why we say it (especially following a tragedy), what it does for our relationship with grief, and who can’t buy into it and why.
Inspired by a listener question, Matt and Pete discuss the relationship between shame and grief, and why we should reconsider our attitude toward outward displays of emotion.
Matt is forced to analyze his own advice (“it’s just stuff!”) when he struggles with not having any of his deceased father’s belongings.
The listeners have spoken, and they want more Pete. Or less Matt. So Pete opens up about his history and experiences in grief and trauma support, explaining why he landed on a route of experiential training over formal schooling. Also: show title change! Modern Grief is now Fun at a Funeral.
When peace and fear are neighbors: dealing with anticipatory grief. Matt mourns the death of his brother-in-law, who battled cancer for 9 years. Pete and Matt reflect on how people live when they know they’re dying, and Pete offers advice for caregivers and family members facing the impending death of a loved one.
“I know exactly how you feel.” “At least you had a mom.” “Just try not to think about it.” Chances are, you’ve said these words to someone who’s grieving or someone has said them to you. Grief is awkward. Really, there aren’t any magic words that will heal the hurt, but there are phrases that can do more harm than good. Pete tells us how to deal with those—whether we’re on the receiving end or (cringe) we delivered them. #griefbloopers
Pete and Matt tackle a tough listener question: "Is it okay to hate a deceased family member if they were abusive?" They talk about the difference between anger and hate, and how building a relationship with anger can help it morph into a productive emotion. Matt and Pete also reveal what their wives would write on their tombstones for the #tombstonechallenge.
Matt and Pete attend their colleague’s grandmother’s funeral and are blown away by the legacy she left. It gets them thinking about their own legacies and what they’ll be known for when they’re gone (Matt for being funny, Pete for his shoes?), and they challenge listeners to ask loved ones what they’d write on their tombstones. #tombstonechallenge
"Just keep going": sometimes the simplest advice is the hardest to follow. Pete tells a powerful story about a child who remains a light for others despite facing two major tragedies in his young life, and Matt shares a personal story about finding rebirth in a waterfall in Hawaii.
In their first episode, Matt Paxton, former host of the hit show HOARDERS, and Pete Shrock, national thought-leader on grief, share their favorite funeral moments and talk about how grief can be a gift.